MRHS FRIDAY FOCUS Weekly Newsletter

MRHS VOICE: Vision of Innovation, Creativity & Excellence

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17th Edition: 1.23.15


Dear Members of the Monomoy Regional School Community:

It has come to our attention that the superintendent and School Committee have been put in a position that could result in significant cuts to staff. It is our understanding that the bulk of these cuts will be occurring at the high school.

We are asking for your support in this time-sensitive matter. There is a meeting of the Harwich Selectmen on the evening of Monday, January 26th at 6:30 in the Griffin Meeting Room of the Harwich Town Hall. By attending this meeting in an effort to listen and speak on behalf of what is best for the students of our district, you can make a difference. Your support would be greatly appreciated.


Douglas Walsh, Ian Hoffman-Terry, Kelly Terrenzi, Matthew Brown, Janis McGrory, and Denise Creedon

Mid Term Exams will take place January 27-30 (10:58 am dismissals)

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Lacrosse Sign ups - Monday January 26, 2:30pm in the cafeteria

MRHS is looking to start a lacrosse program for this spring. All boys and girls interested in playing should attend a brief 10-15 minute sign up and informational meeting on Monday January 26 at 2:30pm in the caf. If you cannot make the meeting please see Mr. Demanche.

Building our School of the Future

One of the most effective ways to promote student growth academically, behaviorally, and socially is through a partnership that bridges the school and home together. We'd like to share this weekly newsletter to keep families abreast of the amazing happenings at our school and pass on important information that will allow parents & students to maintain a positive connection with our school. Please visit our blog at & our website at

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Perfect on MCAS!

Congratulations to MRHS 8th grader Isaiah Stafford for scoring a perfect 280 on last year's MCAS assessment. Isaiah was presented a Shark Shout Out Perfect Score lawn sign by principal Burkhead. Joining Isaiah in the celebration our his family- little brother Quincy, dad Howard and mom Lisa.
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MRHS Students & Staff Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King

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MRHS Student's Participate in "Day of Service" in honoring of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Five MRHS students were chosen as representatives from MRHS to join local Cape Cod Superintendents in a Day of Service at Camp Lyndon. These students model Dr. King's message. Pictured above L/R: Tim McCabe, Cecelia Kane, Isaiah Stafford, Jamie Rushnak and Grace Boyle

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Celebrating Dr. King's Birthday

Some members of the African-American Voice class celebrated Martin Luther King's birthday by attending the film "Selma" at the Orpheum Theatre in Chatham. Many thanks to Orpheum Manager, Kevin McLain, for giving us a group discount and supporting Monomoy students! Pictured are (l to r): Patrick Condelli, James Holt, Nick Norcott, Mrs. Forte-Doyle, Miranda Trieble, Josh Handler, and Tamaki Abe.

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A Tale of Two Cities Rap

Students in Honors English 10 recently held a “Rap or Act” competition in class. Students were put in small groups and told to either write a rap or a skit to capture a particular chapter from their reading homework. Students rapped or acted three different chapters from Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities. Here’s a photo of a winning rap group (l to r): Sean Walsh, Maddie Kavanaugh, and Erin Smeltzer

Seniors Present "Final's Exemption" Proposal to Staff & It Passes!

We are proud of our seniors for taking the time to present a well articulated plan for Final Exam exemptions. Click link for the approved plan:
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MRHS Earth Club Organizes Climate Change Assembly

The Alliance for Climate Education (ACE) brought their award-winning assembly presentation about climate change to our school during Enrichment block this week.

The ACE Assembly covers the essential science behind climate change, real-world consequences, and youth-focused solutions--including what students can do at our school.

The ACE Assembly:

● Has been described as “the best presentation ever” by teachers, students, and administrators across the country. Read rave reviews here and check out the trailer of the presentation.

● Addresses the new Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and state science standards – learn more.

● After the assembly, students can take advantage of ACE's student leadership resources, including Youth Action Labs, online support for Action Teams (clubs), climate communication tools, and solutions-based campaigns and actions. Through the support of generous supporters, ACE is able to offer these resources and opportunities at no cost to students.

A big thank you to Earth Club advisor Ms. Sally Andriola, MRHS student Alex Sequin and MRHS teacher Mr. Bob Byrnes for putting this great experience together for our school!

Check out Katie getting in some exercise on Main Street-Way to Go!

Ms. Dooley offers encouragement!
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From the Health Office

From the Health Office:

The CDC continues to recommend that unvaccinated people get vaccinated for the flu. While some viruses spreading this season are different from those in the vaccine, vaccination can still provide protection and may reduce severity of the illness. The CDC also recommends that people with high risk factors who get flu like symptoms should be evaluated for possible treatment with flu antiviral drugs. In addition to getting the flu vaccine it is important to take every day precautions like staying away from sick people and washing your hands to prevent the spread of germs. If you are sick with the flu, stay home from work or school to prevent spreading the illness to others. Please report flu symptoms, strep throat or other communicable illnesses to the Health Office. Visit for a flu symptom checklist.

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Shark "Shout Outs"

We take pride in having faculty meetings that are meaningful and productive. Involving our amazing teachers in sharing best practices is always a highlight. This week a special Shark "Shout Out" to Ms. Rafferty and Mr. Sowpel. Ms. Rafferty shared "google classroom", during our Tech for 10 (sharing of technology best practices in 10 minutes) and Mr. Sowpel shared strategies to help improve student engagement in our classrooms- thank you both for making us all better!
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Bitzi Windle, Kyle Mazzur, Jade Miller & Maina Zou

Students Visit Museum of Fine Arts with Ms. Hoff

On January 17, 2015 Ms. Hoff and her Spanish 4 students visited the Goya exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes was a Spanish romantic painter and printmaker who we will be studying in the coming weeks along with other Hispanic artists. The largest Goya exhibition in North America in a quarter century, "Goya: Order and Disorder" was on view at the MFA in Boston until this past Monday. We are so grateful we were able to view the exhibit before it was moved.

At the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, students and teachers are invited to explore works of art spanning six continents and thousands of years of history. They offer innovative programs for students and teachers that encourage exploration of the MFA’s world-renowned collections and groundbreaking exhibitions. An extra special thank you to the MFA, Mr. Burkhead for approving the last-minute trip, and to Mr. George Sowpel, our wonderful tour guide and chauffeur.

Welcome Aboard!

Please welcome new staff to MRHS- Ms. Kathy Vagenas is an instructional assistant who joined us from Harwich Elementary school and will be working in Ms. Dooley's classroom. Ms. Caroline Freitas will join us February 2nd as our new culinary arts teacher. We are excited to have them join the MRHS family.
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GREASE is the Word! - Fine Arts News

Rehearsals for the spring musical GREASE are underway with a cast of over 60 students. This week the cast has had the opportunity to work with Broadway actor Robi Hager whose credits include the original Broadway cast of SPRING AWAKENINGS, BYE BYE BIRDIE, and HOW TO SUCEED IN BUSINESS (with Nick Jonas). Robi lives and works in New York and is presently going into rehearsal for a brand new Broadway musical based on the story of Dr. Zhivago. For three days he has worked with the individual leads and the full cast sharing his knowledge and talents. It has been a busy whirlwind of workshops both during the days and after school and an exciting chance for students to learn from a working actor.

Gift Certificates now available in our school store!

We have new items in the school store come and check us out at lunchtime. We also have gift certificates that can be purchased, minimum of $1.00 on each card. Appreciate all the support!

Athletic Department News: Mid-Terms

Please understand that we have done our best to reduce our schedule for practices and if possible games in this exam week, although that part is a bit more challenging. Coaches have scheduled practices earlier when possible as well as given teams some time off. We have moved the boys jv and varsity basketball games at Hull up as much as they(Hull) could accommodate on their end in an attempt to get our student-athletes home sooner. If you have any questions or concerns regarding practice schedules, particularly next week please reach out to your child’s coach. Our game schedules can found either at the Monomoy website under Athletics or at

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Updates, school news, pictures & More

Guidance Corner: Important FAFSA Information

“The 2015-16 FAFSA does not have Monomoy Regional High School listed as an option in their menu to identify which high school a student attends. It may be possible to type in our school name, but if you cannot, you can still select either Chatham or Harwich High School. We have been assured that this will in no way affect eligibility for financial aid. If you have any difficulties with the FAFSA, please contact the Massachusetts Education and Finance Authority (MEFA) at They are available to answer any questions about financial aid from students and families.”

Students in the Monomoy District who are currently in grade 8 or grade 9 are invited to apply for a very special, enriching summer program called PCC. It runs on weekdays only for six weeks (overnight) at Stonehill College from June 28 to August 8. It is geared for students who would love to take some very varied and creative courses in subjects that include things like broadcasting, rocketry, and even the Red Sox. Students also experience wonderful guest speakers, social activities, sports and community service projects. Very special friendships, with motivated students from several other schools, are formed. The students who have attended in the past have consistently called it the best experience of their lives. (And, the still say that as they head off to college). This year for the first time they will be hosting 25 students from China! Families may be able to set up carpools etc. to make the weekly travel easier. Contact Mrs. Callagy in Guidance for more details. She will have applications available for students. The space is limited, so act fast! The deadline is January 27.